One of the biggest hindrances to a child’s academic success is a lack of confidence. Students who are eager to learn something new are often the same students who are confident about learning, because with confidence, new information becomes less frightening and more of a healthy challenge. Children don’t fear disappointment when they know success is within reach.
How does a student become a confident learner? Teachers and parents share the responsibility of strengthening the child’s foundational learning, so that the foundation for new information is set. Questions should be asked: Does the child understand the basics of this information? Do they have a reference or starting point for learning new information? Teachers and parents can also provide reminders of all the wonderful achievements made in the past, no matter how small they may be. An “A” earned in the past, means an “A” possible for the future.
Using positive reinforcement is not always easy. Sometimes yelling, nail-biting, and other negative behavioral changes in children who are not confident are a certain reality. Depending on the child, exhausting every effort may be the only way. Remember, some children have endured years of negative self-talk, bullying, and household abuses that have created destructive patterns in the brain. Gather a team, family or academic, dedicated to supporting the child with a united front. It’s important that the child hears the same message from every team member… SUCCESS!
Some great endings in life, start with an up-hill battle.
The Ward Advocacy Team